Sixth Form College to deliver prestigious Oxford University OxNet seminars

Date published: 06 February 2021

Oldham Sixth Form College (OSFC) has been chosen to deliver university level English Literature seminars on behalf of Oxford University to students from three regions of the UK.

OxNet is an access initiative run collaboratively between Oxford University, other universities across the UK, and schools and colleges acting as ‘hubs’ in London, the North West and the North East.

It is unapologetically academic in its focus and has had significant impact in the local communities in which it has worked since 2008.

OxNet runs intensive courses, involving a mixture of Study Days, Seminar Series, Easter Conferences, Summer Schools and Twilight Talks.

The Seminar Series offers opportunities in Humanities, Philosophy and Religion, Science and Language, and OSFC students have participated in these since the project’s inception.

However, 2021 will be the first year the college has been invited to deliver seminars.

Felix Slade, OxNet Coordinator, is delighted that Oxford University is extending its provision with OSFC.

He said: "This is an ambitious project, aiming to engage a wider breadth of students in the study of English.

"We look forward to the expansion of our project with the expertise of staff and academics alike." 

These feelings are supported by Dr Richard Lee, college Assistant Principal, for whom the project is ‘a vote of confidence in our ability to deliver university style seminars to enthusiastic students across the UK and we can’t wait to get started.’

The seminar series is called ‘The Empire Writes Back’ and will focus on Postcolonial Literature.

It will be delivered by Dr Lee (pictured above) in collaboration with ex-student, Megan Bruton.

Megan, formerly of Saddleworth School, is currently on a gap year before taking up her place at Oxford University to study English Literature.

She is well-placed to co-deliver the seminars having taken part in the OxNet Humanities’ group in 2020 – an experience she found invaluable.

She said: "Partaking in OxNet really threw me into university-level study and gave me a flavour of academic life at Oxford.

"The course helped me so much when I was applying to Oxford and I can't wait to help others on the English course this year.

"OSFC consistently goes the extra mile to help Oxbridge applicants and this is a fantastic extension of that support."

Twenty-one students from the North West, the North East and London have been selected for the Seminar Series, following a rigorous application process, including three students from OSFC itself.

They are really looking forward to getting involved, as Sophie Porter, previously of the Radclyffe School, explains.

She said: "I believe the OxNet English programme will really improve my critical thinking and essay writing, while delving into such a fascinating and powerful topic, and discussing the themes and ideas with others passionate about the subject."

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